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Raiding Bin Laden’s Treasure Trove – Document and Media Exploitation (DOMEX)

By TommyClicks @flickr / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

By TommyClicks @flickr / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

The “collection, analysis, and exploitation of captured equipment, documents, and media to generate actionable intelligence” called Document and Mediation Exploitation (DOMEX), is what is being conducted currently after US special forces have acquired computers and various storage devices and media from Osama bin Laden’s hideout.

This entails data acquisition from stored images of suspect digital media and forensic analysis, such as translation and keyword searches, scans of file systems for deleted or changed files, recovering deleted files and decryption of encrypted data. The obtained images are analyzed and shared through HARMONY database, the national intelligence DOMEX repository.

The National Media and Exploitation Center (NMEC), as a Director of National Intelligence (DNI) organization under executive control of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), is the central national DOMEX clearinghouse to provide “timely and accurate collection, processing, exploitation, and dissemination” for “intelligence, defense, homeland security, law enforcement and other U.S. Government consumers”, composed of DIA, Central intelligence Agency (CIA), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Defence Cyber Crime Center (DCCC) and National Security Agency (NSA).

DOMEX refers explicitly to documents and media which are not publicly available and is therefore not considered Open Source Information (OSINF). However, and not surprisingly, it supports the whole range of intelligence activities, including All Source Intelligence (ASINT) and Open Source Intelligence (OSINT). Noteworthily though, “oversight, coordination, evaluation, policy direction, guidance, and tasking” of Intelligence Community (IC) DOMEX organizations falls under the authority of the Assistant Deputy Director of National Intelligence for Open Source (ADDNI/OS), who also chairs the DOMEX Committee (DOMEXCOM), comprised of senior executives from NMEC, DIA, CIA, FBI, DCCC, NSA, U.S. Army, Department of Homeland Security, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), and other members as determined by the ADDNI/OS.

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